AU Diaspora African Forum to present awards

Washington, DC – On August 4th at the Washington Marriott at Metro Center, the African
Diaspora’s most prominent ‘Bridge Builders’ who have made contributions in the areas of
development, strengthening relationships and providing opportunities for returning Africans, will
indulge in a star studded evening of dinner, dancing and music. The event will feature awardwinning
actors Lynn Whitfield and Lou Gossett Jr., and Nana Rita Marley, wife of famed Reggae
great Bob Marley.
The ‘African Diaspora Bridge Builders Awards’ emerges on the heels of a monumental feat in U.S.
History: The first U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit. The gathering of African Leaders at The White
House, was initially announced by President Barack Obama during a visit to Cape Town last year
as a means to ’provide a proactive and forward looking vision grounded in partnership [with
Africa].’ From the 4th through the 6th of August, invited African leaders will work to Strengthen
Democratic Institutions, Spur Economic Growth, Trade, and Investment, Advance Peace and
Security, and Promote Opportunity and Development. Historically President Obama is the first U.S.
President to facilitate a relationship with Africa. He initially showed interest in June 2012 with the
launch of The New Strategy Towards sub-saharan Africa.
Asked about President Obama’s efforts to bridge the Diaspora gap, H.E. Dr. Erieka Bennett,
Ambassador of the (AU) Diaspora African Forum remarked, “I am personally thrilled to see the
descendants of enslaved Africans work together with their continental brothers and sisters to dispel
the stories that have kept our people apart. President Obama is a descendant. We are thankful to
see him engage Africa in a meaningful way.”
The African Diaspora Bridge Builder Awards Honorees are:
Countries
Ghana
Ethiopia
Liberia
Tanzania
Organizations
Africa Society of the National Summit on Africa (Bernadette Paolo, Esq., President & CEO)
African Diaspora Network/ ADN (Almaz Negash, Founder & President)
Africare (Dr. Darius Mans, President)
Constituency for Africa/ CFA (Melvin P. Foote, President)
Diaspora Africa Women’s Network/ DAWN (Semhar Araia, Founder & Executive Director)
Rita Marley Foundation (Nana Rita Marley OD, Founder)
The Nigerian House Committee on Diaspora Affairs (Honorable Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairperson)
TransAfrica (Danny Glover, Chairman of the Board)
Individuals
Ufo Eric Atuanya
Dr. Barryl Biekman
Ms. Xernona Clayton
Lou Gossett, Jr.
Dr. Leonard Jefferies
General Fred Leigh & Dr. Karyn Trader-Leigh
Brother Akbar Muhammad
Princess Naa Asie Okansey
Dr. Chika A. Onyeani
Ms. Jeannie B. Scott
Rev. Dr. Leon H. Sullivan (Posthumously)
Ambassador Dr. Bamanga Tukur
J. Eric Wright
H. E. Dr. Nkosazana Diamini Zuma
The celebration is supported by the (AU) Diaspora African Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable
organization. The AU Diaspora African Foundation supports communication and understanding
among all African descendants through education, exchange programs, activities and conferencing.
Asked about President Obama’s efforts to bridge the Diaspora gap, H.E. Dr. Erieka Bennett,
Ambassador of the (AU) Diaspora African Forum remarked, “I am personally thrilled to see the
descendants of enslaved Africans work together with their continental brothers and sisters to dispel
the stories that have kept our people apart. President Obama is a descendant. We are thankful to
see him engage Africa in a meaningful way.”
The African Diaspora Bridge Builders Awards
Honoring The African Diaspora’s most prominent ‘Bridge Builders’ who have made contributions in
the areas of development, strengthening relationships and providing opportunities for returning
Africans.
Date:
August 4. Silent Auction, 5:30PM; Dinner and Awards, 6:30PM – 8:30PM
Location:
The Washington Marriott at Metro Center, 775 12th Street NW Washington, DC 20005
Sponsorship opportunities are still available. Please contact
bridgebuildersawards@gmail.com for more information.
About the African Union (AU) Diaspora African Forum
The (AU) Diaspora African Forum is an African Union endorsed non-governmental organization which was
established on the 1st of July, 2007. The Mission was born as a result of the recommendations of the African
Union ad hoc Ministerial Committee that, the AU should invite and encourage the full participation of Africans
in the Diaspora in the building of the African Union, in its capacity as an important part of the continent. The
(AU) Diaspora African Forum Mission is the first diplomatic mission of its kind to be established in Africa and
has its headquarters located in Accra, Ghana on the premises of the historic W.E.B. Dubois Centre. The
mission is opened to all willing individuals and organizations who share in the vision and goals of the (AU)
Diaspora African Forum Mission.
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MEDIA ALERT FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | July 15, 2014
The African Union (AU) Diaspora African Forum Presents:
The African Diaspora Bridge Builders Awards
During the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit
In support of the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, The African Union (AU) Diaspora African Forum
will host The African Diaspora Bridge Builders Awards.

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